August 12, 2005
By JEFFREY B. COHEN, Courant Staff Writer
Toolmakers, tire sellers, candy makers, upholsterers, printers,
insurers, engravers, grocers, and office suppliers have all called
the long red brick building at the corner of Capitol Avenue and
Flower Street home.
And for its next act, the building most recently the headquarters
of Hartford Office Supply will be home to condominium owners.
The not-quite-downtown building near the state Capitol and The Hartford
Courant sold earlier this month for $2.65 million, city records show.
Henry M. Zachs, whose father bought the building in 1939, decided
the time was right to part with the property.
"The reason I decided to sell the building was that the state
was not interested, The Courant was not interested ... and I had
talked to various nonprofit institutions about using it, and none
of them really had the dollars to make it a place for artists," Henry
The buyer is Capitol Ave. Tarragon LLC of New York, a company affiliated
with Tarragon Corp., Zachs said. That company plans to bring condos
to Capitol Avenue, he said.
Saul Spitz, an executive vice president with Tarragon, confirmed
the project will turn the factory into condos, but he said it was
too early to discuss the number, size and price for the units.
His company owns roughly 3,500
apartment units throughout the state, but this is its first venture
into the Hartford real estate market, he said. "The property itself is a building that lends itself
to what we feel will be a very comfortable and attractive conversion
and recycling for residential use," he said. "And I like
Spitz added that the downtown
condo market is "currently totally
underserved." Also, he believes the type of condominium the
building will house will be different from anything the city has
"And it's close enough to still capitalize on the downtown
buzz," Spitz said. "We certainly have a strong potential
clientele to pull from."
According to its website, Tarragon was founded as a real estate
company in 1973, has offices in New York City, Connecticut, Florida,
Tennessee and Texas.
The city's most recent assessment of the roughly 115,000-square-foot
building and associated land was in 2004 and was for $1 million -
a fair market value of $1.44 million.
John F. Palmieri, director of development services for the city,
said he was pleased to hear the news.
"I think it's noteworthy and it goes to this whole matter of
spinning off some of the positive things happening downtown," Palmieri
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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